Racism in Toronto is the focus of a new campaign being launched by the city on Tuesday.
In a video, Torontonians of East Asian descent share their experiences that range from subtle micro aggressions, to full out assault.
One story involves someone walking up, coughing in someone’s face, and laughing.
The city is calling on everyone to speak up instead of standing in silence and complicity.
Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam tweeted, “At all times, racism is systemic & pervasive. And it has worsen in a global pandemic, when leaders like Donald Trump & others insist on calling #COVID19 the ‘Chinese virus.’ They’re furthering a climate of hate & racial violence against East Asians which must challenged. (VIDEO).”
Wong-Tam added that she’s heard from East Asian students who have been bullied, and parents worried about their mental health and physical safety. Transit riders and seniors have been harassed, and shop keepers assaulted.
According to the Chinese Canadian National Council, 26 per cent of more than 600 incidents reported in the country took place in Toronto, and those don’t include the more subtle and subversive discrimination.
The @CityofToronto + @ccncsj partnered to raise awareness about the rise of anti-East Asian racism. Although we stand apart to defeat the coronavirus – we must also work together to stop all forms of hate and racism, including anti-East Asian racism. It's up to us. #TorontoForAll
— Kristyn Wong-Tam (@kristynwongtam) October 13, 2020
The city is also encouraging Torontonians to learn about the diversity and culture of countries like China, Japan, Korea, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
It’s part of an existing campaign called #TorontoForAll that has also focused on ending Islamaphobia, and racism against the Black community.
You can head to the City of Toronto’s website for more information.